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All Board! Dinosaur Express

All Aboard! Dinosaur Express

April 23 @ 10:00 am5:00 pm

Enjoy virtual school vacation week activities, inspired by the special exhibit Dinosaur Train and our permanent collections.

Are Dinosaurs Really Extinct?

The last of most dinosaur species died out about 65 million years ago. But did all life on Earth die out at the same time? No! We know that many species of both plants and animals were able to adapt in order to survive.

These animal species lived on Earth at the same time as dinosaurs and are still alive today!







Horseshoe Crabs

But wait…

Did we just say “most dinosaur species died out?” Yes! It turns out that some theropods survived the cataclysmic event that killed most dinosaurs!

Most therapods shared these characteristics:

  1. Hollow bones
  2. Three main toes for walking on two legs
  3. Sharp teeth for eating meat
  4. Claws

Some maniraptora (an even smaller group of therapods) survived and evolved and changed over the next 65 million years.  Today these dinosaurs live on every continent on Earth!

We call these living dinosaurs BIRDS!

Compsognathus longipes, a coelurosaur from the Late Jurassic of Europe. © Nobu Tamura
Falcarius skeleton reconstruction
Falcarius skeleton reconstruction, Utah Museum of Natural History.
Birds Around the World

According to the American Museum of Natural History, there are approximately 18,000 species of birds across our world!

Birds Around the World
Local Living Dinosaurs

If you live in New England or nearby and you go for a social-distancing walk with your grownups, you may be able to spot some of these living dinosaurs! Scroll through the gallery or use the worksheet.





Male And Female Cardinals


American Robin




American Crow




American Goldfinch


PigeonSparrowMale And Female CardinalsAmerican RobinHummingbirdAmerican CrowBluejayAmerican Goldfinch
Smithsonian Affiliate

Did you know that Springfield Museums is a Smithsonian Affiliate? The Smithsonian National Zoo & Conservation Biology Institute is working to help migratory birds. Visit their website to learn how to get involved.

Birds in Art

Springfield Museums is home to the largest collection of Currier & Ives prints in the world! Currier & Ives was a successful American printmaking business focused on lithographs depicting a wide variety of subjects. These four bird prints are in the collection of the D’Amour Museum of Fine Arts at Springfield Museums. Click the images to read more about each print.

Parent birds and their family of eleven chicks grazing in field
Woodland scene - five small yellow chicks nestled in grass near a rock
Woodland scene of Mother bird with eight chicks
Birds and chicks in grassy area of woods
Make It: Chipboard Bird

You can make an art project based on a real bird or one that you imagine.

You will need:

  • Chipboard, like an empty cereal box
  • Scissors
  • Markers or crayons
  • Glue
  • Craft feathers, googly eyes, or other collage materials

Cut a bird shape out of a piece of chipboard.  Real birds have bodies, heads, legs, feet, and wings of all different shapes and sizes. Color some parts of your bird and add collage pieces where you like.

Share your creations with us using #AtTheMuseums.



April 23
10:00 am–5:00 pm


Springfield Museums
21 Edwards Street
Springfield, MA 01103 United States


Family Programs